Sunday, May 26, 2013

The Trouble with Double Trouble

I sort of made this promise I'd talk about the last book in the Modern Fairy Tale series. Some of you are waiting impatiently for it. I can't tell you how gratifying that is. I set out to write three books with three different woman and love stories. I spent over two years angsting about whether or not I should even publish the series.

For the most part, these stories were so different from what I was used to writing that I was convinced I was cracked in the head for even wanting to publish them. They were sassy and heartfelt books I told myself when I gave up on writing on romance. The only romance people wanted was the kind where loins were lit on fire. People didn't want romance that was about the art of flirtation, connection or conversations you have when you're stripped of all else but words. Yes, I was totally having an emo moment while writing these books.

And even as a series they were so different that I couldn't imagine a publisher wanting the first one and then wanting the second, much less the third. Series are supposed to have uniformity. Book 1 looks like book 2,3 and so on and so forth. Double Dare is not at all like Twice Smitten. I can understand why folks will hate DD and love TS. Or vice versa. I can also understand why DD is why they love TS because folks just love the world. Yet, I had nothing but doubts about this series and was convinced it would fall dead on its face no matter what I did to sell it to you. But, well over 40,000 of you downloaded Double Dare in a month. You're moving on to Twice Smitten and loving it. You're waiting impatiently for Double Trouble.

Sigh.

The thing with Sasha's book is that she's an unwieldy heroine. Emma is sweet. I've never been that in my life, but sweet is something I GET and can write. Abigail is stubborn beyond the telling of it. That I can GET because I am for that most part and I can write it.

But, Sasha...hmmm. She's sweet, sexy, clueless, but smart. She doesn't have a deep, dark past that stops her from falling in love with the right guy. She is the epitome of the mistakes you make when you're young, but she doesn't regret a single one of them because she's level-headed enough to know it's what made her..her. And it's what she wanted to do at the time. She's flighty, but dependable when it's things that matter. If you want the middle road between Emma's sweetness and Abigail's stubbornness, you'd get Sasha.

And, it's tough to make a character like that shine on the page and be likeable or sympathetic. She's both nothing but flaws and perfection all wrapped into one. The problem is I do and don't GET her. Hell, I wrote her story. It's written and done, for the most part. I know what her arc is, she wants to leave behind all the mistakes of her past because, although she doesn't regret them, she doesn't want to live them again. She wants stable. It's what she grew up in and there's nothing to sneer at it. Especially when you grow up and find that's pretty much what you've surrounded yourself with. This is where the cluelessness comes in because she's convinced you can only find stability, love and maybe a little bit of lust in predictability.

But, Sasha is SASHA. She is flighty, dependable, sweet, stubborn, sexy and clueless. Sasha is a chameleon, which is fine unless you're trying to write that kind of character and make people believe they should totally stay to find out what her story is. And then you have Warren, her hero who is sweet, adorable and kinky as hell. He's grounded in something that I totally get—he's a writer—so his conflicting personality makes complete sense.

So...the problem, in part, is Sasha. Not that she needs fixing. She's perfectly flawed and fine as she is. The problem is me writing Sasha. The problem is ending a series in a fulfilling way when the story isn't about burning loins—though there is plenty in this story. It's SASHA—that completes the promise of a story that's about connection, the art of flirtation, conversations when you've been stripped of everything but words. It's about the Modern Fairy that starts off by saying Once upon a time in a whisper and ending by screaming They lived happily ever after because love is real and it's not perfect. Sometimes it's not exciting every second you're with them and the only fireworks are how you feel when you look at the person you've fallen head over heels with and you know... THEY KNOW YOU.


Ok. So the trouble with Double Trouble is that I'm emo romance writer who wrote this unconventional and weird series that requires a little more ansting than usual to finish. Take this blog post as a positive sign, it's getting to you soon. Talk about emo...

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

I love the Modern day fairy tales.... I'm waiting to hear Sasha's story. You write wonderfully...I've enjoyed each story. So glad that the characters are actually portrayed as professionals.

Melissa Blue said...

Anon,

Thank you. I wanted to show the characters passion for what they do. Not sure how it worked out like that in all three books, but it's another common thread.

Anyway, I'm still plugging away on Sasha's story. Hopefully it'll be out before the end of the year.

Melissa Blue said...
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